November 8th, 2010

Murasaki Shikibu
  • homasse

Anonymous DDoS Takes Down The United States Copyright Office

Anonymous DDoS Takes Down The United States Copyright Office

As part of its ongoing punishment of any institute or company that defends copyright, Anonymous has now taken down the website of The United States Copyright Office. The group managed to take offline for half an hour. After that the website started to respond again slowly, with occasional outages.

In the last two months, dozens of anti-piracy groups, copyright lawyers and pro-copyright outfits have been targeted by a group of Internet ‘vigilantes’ under the flag of Operation Payback.

The operation began in September with DDoS assaults against the MPAA, RIAA and anti-piracy company AiPlex Software. The latter was picked as the first target because the outfit openly admitted to DDoSing several torrent sites, allegedly including The Pirate Bay.

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Supreme Court has turned down first preliminary challenge to Obama's health care overhaul

The Court refused to hear the first case to reach it seeking to challenge the new federal health care law — a plea to rule on the issue before any federal appeals court has done so. No noted dissent or recusal from the denial.

The Supreme Court on Monday turned aside the first attempt to pursue a constitutional challenge to the new federal health care law. The initial test sought to draw the Court into the nationwide controversy over the law, before any federal appeals court has yet ruled on it. The Court’s order denying review of Baldwin v. Sebelius (10-369) indicated there were no dissents and no recusals. That was at least a preliminary indication that, when the issue does reach the Court, Justice Elena Kagan, a former Obama Administration official, would take part. The Court granted no new cases.


Asking For It?

“Well, you do look very gay. Can’t you tone it down a bit?” a straight friend blithely said in response to the recent homophobic bother I’ve been getting and writing about here. Astonishingly, she genuinely seemed surprised when I told her I found what she said offensive. Her argument was that she was only trying to help as I might get less anti-gay grief if I dialled down the, you know, gayness and “acted a bit straighter”.

Ah, the old straight-acting chestnut. Every time someone starts banging on that queer folk should shadow heterosexual behaviour I have this strong urge to channel The Village People and sing showtunes because what I can’t fathom is the sheer arrogance of telling someone, or more accurately an entire social stratum, how to behave. What they’re really saying, of course, is that we should act more like them because their behaviour is right and any deviation from that dominant norm is wrong.

And it’s not just the hetero world that values straight-acting so highly. Nonsensically, it’s ours, too. The reason I don’t see the sense in us lauding the straight act is because surely one of the great advantages of being ‘other’ is that you don’t have to play by the narrow norm’s rules of engagement and can invent your own. Yet straight-acting has become one of the most prized character traits in queerdom. Doubtless it grew out of a need to avoid a good homophobic kicking, but it has become an absolute gay scene mania.

I’ve lost count of the amount of gay people I’ve encountered in my life who are visibly proud when they’re mistaken for being straight when, in actuality, it isn’t anything to be proud of. We really should be ashamed, because if we’re so obsessed with artificially constructing a hetero façade aren’t we, in effect, denying who we are? Doesn’t all this pretence have more than a whiff of self-hatred about it? That’s why whenever another gayer sneeringly says to me, “Oh, you can tell you’re gay” I always respond in the same way: “Good, because I am.”

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Source: Jason Jones @ GaydarNation
MLP Rainbow Dash nahnah

Some Afghan Women Turning to Self-Immolation

For Afghan Wives, a Desperate, Fiery Way Out
By Alissa J. Rubin

HERAT, Afghanistan — Even the poorest families in Afghanistan have matches and cooking fuel. The combination usually sustains life. But it also can be the makings of a horrifying escape: from poverty, from forced marriages, from the abuse and despondency that can be the fate of Afghan women.

The night before she burned herself, Gul Zada took her children to her sister’s for a family party. All seemed well. Later it emerged that she had not brought a present, and a relative had chided her for it, said her son Juma Gul.

This small thing apparently broke her. Ms. Zada, who was 45, the mother of six children and who earned pitiably little cleaning houses, ended up with burns on nearly 60 percent of her body at the Herat burn hospital. Survival is difficult even at 40 percent.

“She was burned from head to toe,” her son remembers.

The hospital here is the only medical center in Afghanistan that specifically treats victims of burning, a common form of suicide in this region, partly because the tools to do it are so readily available. Through early October, 75 women arrived with burns — most self-inflicted, others only made to look that way. That is up nearly 30 percent from last year.

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The writing in this article bothers me, though I'm finding it hard to put a finger on why. That said, I thought it was important to share.

Brandon Bitner: Anti-gay bullying leads to another tragic teen suicide

MIDDLEBURG, Penn. — Anti-gay bullying has reportedly claimed another teen life.

Brandon Bitner, 14, of Mount Pleasant Mills, Penn., walked 13 miles from his home early Friday morning to a busy intersection and threw himself in front of an oncoming tractor-trailer after leaving a suicide note at his home, according to The Daily Item.

There seems to be little doubt in the students’ minds why Bitner did what he did.

“It was because of bullying,” friend Takara Jo Folk wrote in a letter to The Daily Item.

“It was not about race, or gender, but they bullied him for his sexual preferences and the way he dressed. Which,” she said, “they wrongly accused him of.”

Brandon’s suicide note explained that he was constantly bullied at Midd-West High School in Middleburg, where he was a freshman.

Bullies reportedly called Brandon gay, girly, fag, and geek. He stated in the note that a humiliating event in school this past week was the “straw that broke the camel’s back.”

Brandon was an accomplished violinist, having been a member of the Susquehanna Youth Orchestra in 2009.

His death came just days after an anti-bullying assembly at the high school, which, according to district Superintendent Wesley Knapp, was not held in response to any specific problems at the school, but because it is an issue Principal Cynthia Hutchinson has always felt strongly about.

Friends of Brandon have set up a Facebook page, “RIP Brandon Bitner.”

A memorial website is here, and the Patriot-News has Brandon’s obituary here.

  • luomo

Morgan Stanley Wealth Manager Won't Face Felony Charges For Hit-And-Run

A Morgan Stanley wealth manager will not face felony charges for a hit-and-run because Colorado prosecutors don't want him to lose his job.

Martin Joel Erzinger, who manages more than $1 billion in assets for Morgan Stanley in Denver, is being accused only of a misdemeanor for allegedly driving his Mercedes into a cyclist and then fleeing the scene, Colorado's Vail Daily reports. The victim, Dr. Steven Milo, whom Erzinger allegedly hit in July, suffered spinal cord injuries, bleeding from his brain and, according to his lawyer Harold Haddon, "lifetime pain."

But District Attorney Mark Hurlbert says it wouldn't be wise to prosecute Erzinger -- doing so might hurt his source of income. Here's Vail Daily:

"Felony convictions have some pretty serious job implications for someone in Mr. Erzinger's profession, and that entered into it," Hurlbert said. "When you're talking about restitution, you don't want to take away his ability to pay."

"We have talked with Mr. Haddon and we had their objections, but ultimately it's our call," Hurlbert said.

Milo, who lives in New York City with his wife and kids, is furious about the dropped charges, Vail Daily says. The doctor's line of work, like Erzinger's, has been threatened by the incident. "His ability to deal with the physical challenges of his profession -- liver transplant surgery -- has been seriously jeopardized," Haddon, Milo's lawyer, said. Here's Milo, from the Vail Daily:

"Mr. Erzinger struck me, fled and left me for dead on the highway," Milo wrote. "Neither his financial prominence nor my financial situation should be factors in your prosecution of this case."

Reuters' Felix Salmon compares the dropped charges to the kind of financial invulnerability that bankers felt in the years leading up to the financial crisis:

No matter how egregious their behavior, financiers knew that they would end up wealthy and comfortable. That, in turn, made it much easier to overcome their natural risk aversion.


Story continues below
Erzinger has bought his way out of a felony charge, over the strenuous objections of his victim; it's very unlikely that online petitions will do any good at this point. Just another thing to add to the list of things that money can buy, I suppose.

The bicycling blog Abandon Your Car, which includes an online petition, calls the incident "one of the most disturbing, and indeed disgusting, miscarriages of justice in my recent memory."

Business Insider, for its part, defends Erzinger, saying that due to restitution payments, he "might be working for the rest of his life and giving much of his paycheck to the victim."

Morgan Stanley told The Huffington Post that they are aware of the situation and stressed that it was separate from Erzinger's professional role.

"This unfortunate situation was not related to the individual's professional activities, but we are continuing to monitor the situation and will cooperate fully with law enforcement, if requested," said a Morgan Stanley representative.

mus | like a bird in a cage

Harper vows to stand up for Israel

Stephen Harper says he'll take a forceful stand against anti-Israel rhetoric no matter the political cost to his government at international organizations such as the United Nations and the Francophonie.

The prime minister delivered the opening speech Monday at a two-day conference on anti-Semitism, taking place on Parliament Hill.

He noted Canada's unsuccessful bid for a UN security council seat this fall, saying he believes the country is morally obligated to stand up against those who would attack Israel.

"And I know, by the way, because I have the bruises to show for it, that whether it is at the United Nations or any other international forum, the easy thing to do is simply to just get along and go along with this anti-Israel rhetoric, to pretend it is just being even-handed, and to excuse oneself with the label of honest broker.

"There are, after all, a lot more votes — a lot more — in being anti-Israel than in taking a stand."

The reference to "honest broker" was a thinly veiled swipe at Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff.

Ignatieff attacked the Conservative government in a speech this month for sacrificing Canada's ability to command respect on the issue of peace in the Middle East. Ignatieff said Harper has used Israel as a wedge issue in Canadian politics, and called for a return to a time when Canada was seen as an honest broker in the world.

Harper said Israel may be subjected to fair criticism, and noted that Israel subjects itself to such criticism as part of a healthy, democratic debate. But he spoke of a "solemn duty" to defend the vulnerable and challenge the aggressor at home and abroad.

"Not just because it is the right thing to do, but because history shows us, and the ideology of the anti-Israel mob tell us all too well, that those who threaten the existence of the Jewish people are in the longer term a threat to all of us."

lost // jack

Teen beaten to death at GA house party

DOUGLASVILLE, Ga. — A teenager was stomped, kicked and punched to death at a weekend house party after police say he walked by a group who decided to pounce on the next person who passed by. Four have been charged with murder.

District Attorney David McDade said the four, who appeared in court Monday, were charged with murder in the death of 18-year-old Bobby Tillman early Sunday in Douglas County, west of Atlanta.

The party was intended to be a small gathering of about 10 friends of a girl who lives at the house, but it grew to a group of 60-80 after word spread by e-mails and other electronic messages, said Douglas County Sheriff Phil Miller. When the girl's parents saw how many people had come, they asked the partiers to leave.

That's when a fight broke out between two females and two males at a house party, and one of the females hit a male, said Douglas County Maj. Tommy Wheeler said. He said the man said he wouldn't retaliate against a girl, but he would hit the next man that walked by.

Tillman happened to be the unlucky person, and Wheeler said multiple attackers beat and stomped him. Tillman was still breathing when officers arrived, but he didn't survive, even after CPR was administered.

"It's amazing," said Wheeler. "He had nothing to do with anything, they just decided he's the one. And they killed him."

Miller said he doesn't think the victim knew his attackers and that they had attended different high schools.

Tillman's mother, Monique Revaida, said she wants justice for her son.

"He was my only son. He was my best friend. He was an angel here on earth and I was blessed to be his mother," said

"My son did not die in vain. My son is a silent hero. He touched so many lives I didn't know about. Bobby was a ray of sunshine through every dark cloud."

McDade called the killing senseless: "Senseless is the only word I can use to describe it. It is an absolutely unprovoked, senseless killing."

Douglas County Coroner Randy Daniel said Monday Tillman died of blunt force trauma to the head and chest.

The four who appeared Monday at an initial hearing in the killing of Tillman were identified as Quantez Devonta Mallory, Horace Damon Coleman, Emanuel Benjamin Boykins and Tracen Lamar Franklin.

The judge informed the defendants they would have to obtain counsel. None of the four spoke at the hearing.

The sheriff said he didn't expect the parents whose daughter hosted the party to face charges. No drugs or alcohol were found in the house.


What the fuck is this, I don't even...

Here's hoping Jorge Videla quickly follows him...

 Emilio Massera dead, a symbol of illegal repression

The former chief of the dictatorship died this afternoon because of a hemorrhagic stroke. He was admitted to the Naval Hospital in Buenos Aires.

Former repressor Emilio Massera died today at age 85 at the Naval Hospital this afternoon. 

Massera, a member of the military junta that in 1976, established one of the bloodiest dictatorships in Argentina's history, died of a hemorrhagic stroke and according to reports, the Naval hospital will release a statement.

The former Navy chief was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1985 and pardoned in 1990 by former President Carlos Menem by Decree 2741/90.

This decision [pardon] was rejected by the Supreme Court of the Nation and this year the court upheld the revocation of the pardon to the dictator.


Former Commander of Argentina's Military Dictatorship Emilio Massera Dead

He died at 85 by a hemorrhagic stroke, in the Naval Hospital.

The former admiral Emilio Eduardo Massera, one of the strongmen of the bloody dictatorship that ruled Argentina between 1976 and 1983, died today as local media reported.

The so-called 'Admiral Zero' had been stripped of his military rank and sentenced to life imprisonment for heinous crimes committed during the illegal repression that caused the deaths of thousands of Argentines.

Massera, who died in the Naval Hospital in Buenos Aires, was prosecuted for theft and change of identity of children who disappeared during the coup regime.


Sorry the article is so short; I'll try to add stuff as it comes in. With that being said, I'm soooo glad this motherfucker is dead. Too bad he died at age 85 when the majority of his
victims died at ages at least four or five decades before that. 

ETA:This HuffPo link (already in English) has a ton more information.
MP - My Nipples Explode With Delight


Andrew Shirvell fired from job at Michigan Attorney General's Office

Andrew Shirvell has been fired from his job as a Michigan assistant state attorney general, his attorney said this afternoon.

Shirvell was fired for using state resources for his campaign against University of Michigan student body President Chris Armstrong and for lying to investigators during his disciplinary hearing, Attorney General Mike Cox said in a statement.

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Source won't be shedding any tears.

Up next: Shirvell gets disbarred, we can only fucking hope.

Irena Sendler, Lifeline to Young Jews, Is Dead at 98

Irena Sendler, a Roman Catholic who created a network of rescuers in Poland who smuggled about 2,500 Jewish children out of the Warsaw ghetto in World War II, some of them in coffins, died Monday in Warsaw. She was 98.

The death was confirmed by Stanlee Stahl, executive vice president of the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous, an organization that supports rescuers of Holocaust victims.

Mrs. Sendler was head of the children’s bureau of Zegota, an underground organization set up to save Jews after the Nazis invaded Poland on Sept. 1, 1939. Soon after the invasion, approximately 450,000 Jews, about 30 percent of Warsaw’s population, were crammed into a tiny section of the city and barricaded behind seven-foot-high walls.

On April 19, 1943, the Nazis began what they expected would be a rapid liquidation of the ghetto. It took them more than a month to quell the Warsaw ghetto uprising. By then, only about 55,000 Jews were still alive; most of them were sent to death camps.

Also by then, however, Mrs. Sendler’s group of about 30 volunteers, mostly women, had managed to slip hundreds of infants, young children and teenagers to safety.

“She was the inspiration and the prime mover for the whole network that saved those 2,500 Jewish children,” Debórah Dwork, the Rose professor of Holocaust history at Clark University in Massachusetts, said Monday. Professor Dwork, the author of “Children With a Star” (Yale University Press, 1991), said about 400 children had been directly smuggled out by Mrs. Sendler.

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OP EDIT: so, um, apparently this news is old hat. My apologies, mods can delete if they see fit.
  • merig00

War on Scisors

As many as 14 armed Orange County deputies, including narcotics agents, stormed Strictly Skillz barbershop during business hours on a Saturday in August, handcuffing barbers in front of customers during a busy back-to-school weekend.

It was just one of a series of unprecedented raid-style inspections the Orange County Sheriff's Office recently conducted with a state regulating agency, targeting several predominantly black- and Hispanic-owned barbershops in the Pine Hills area.

In "sweeps" on Aug. 21 and Sept. 17 targeting at least nine shops, deputies arrested 37 people — the majority charged with "barbering without a license," a misdemeanor that state records show only three other people have been jailed in Florida in the past 10 years.

The operations were conducted without warrants, under the authority of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation inspectors, who can enter salons at will. Deputies said they found evidence of illegal activity, including guns, drugs and gambling. However, records show that during the two sweeps, and a smaller one in October, just three people were charged with anything other than a licensing violation.

Orange County sheriff's Capt. Dave Ogden, who commands the area that includes Pine Hills, described the operations as a "minuscule" part of a larger effort to snuff out crime in one of Central Florida's notorious hot spots.

Asked why his unit made arrests for licensing violations, Ogden said: "It was a misdemeanor crime being committed in our presence. We decided to make arrests."

But many of the barbers who were swept up in the operations are still angry months later.

"They made a big charade about it," barber Jason Abrams said, "like we were selling drugs or something."

No ordinary inspection?

Brian Berry owns Strictly Skillz, a barbershop on Pine Hills Road. He says he's used to licensing inspections, but what happened in his shop Aug. 21 was something else.

Berry said deputies entered his store and told his barbers to stop cutting and put their hands behind their backs. As barbers sat on the ground in handcuffs, he said, deputies removed his customers — including children — from the store, and began searching workstations and checking licenses without explanation.

Barbers and witnesses at several shops told the Orlando Sentinel that deputies shouted and cursed during the raids, demanding the location of illegal drugs, which they searched for extensively. They never found more than misdemeanor amounts of marijuana at eight of the nine shops they raided.

The lone exception: Just Blaze on Semoran Boulevard in Apopka, where an arrest report shows deputies found Ski Joseph Vasquez, 40, with "2 baggies of cocaine in a prescription bottle" and cutting agents in the barbershop's office during the Sept. 17 sweep. Vasquez was arrested on drug- and gun-related charges after deputies said they found a handgun in his car.

On the same day, deputies raided two other barbershops and found no illegal activity other than unlicensed barbering. And besides the arrest at Just Blaze, reports show the two sweeps turned up the following: evidence of gambling, equipment "that appeared to be used" to make pirated DVDs and CDs, "some sort of tax service," two handguns and misdemeanor amounts of marijuana.

During the smaller operation Oct. 8, deputies arrested two additional people on unlicensed-barbering charges at one salon.

With the exception of two misdemeanor marijuana charges and Vasquez's arrest, deputies were unable to connect any of the illegal activity to anyone. Meanwhile, store owners reported property damage from the raids, including a large hole employees said deputies busted into a wall at 809 Barbershop in Ocoee.

However, several owners said the damage to their businesses and reputations has been much worse.

'Cornerstone of the community'

To those who live in the communities they serve, these barbershops are more than places to get a haircut.

"They are the centers of political discourse and political organization in black communities," said Melissa Harris-Perry, professor of African-American studies at Princeton University.

Harris-Perry, author of "Barbershops, Bibles, and BET: Everyday Talk and Black Political Thought," called the idea of deputies invading shops during both a recession and an election year "pretty horrifying."

She said by violating the barbershop's role as a "safe place" in the black community, deputies may have placed the community's trust in local law enforcement at risk. "It's exactly counterproductive," she said, adding that targeting minority barbershops sends a message about "which communities deserve to be disrupted and which don't."

Still, Bishop Kelvin L. Cobaris of Empowerment Ministries Church of Pine Hills defended the actions of the Sheriff's Office. He said deputies have been effective in reducing crime in the area, and if the searches were legal and criminal activity was discovered, the deputies' approach to entering the shops "shouldn't matter."

However, if barbers who weren't committing crimes were detained, "that would be something that would leave me with concerns," Cobaris said.

On a recent Saturday afternoon, about a dozen boys and men gathered at Strictly Skillz. Many chairs were empty. Berry said he can't be sure it was the August raid that caused business to dip. While the young boy whose hair he was cutting watched football on the nearest television, Berry watched the door. He heard the Sheriff's Office had been back out.

"They should know these barbershops are the cornerstone of the community," he said. Still, he worried his last inspection was only the first of its kind.

Criminal barbering?

If you didn't know cutting hair without a license was a crime, you're not alone. An arrest for barbering without a license is not just unusual — in the state of Florida, it's nearly unheard of.

Florida Department of Law Enforcement records turned up only 38 jail bookings on the misdemeanor charge across the entire state in the past 10 years — and all but three of those arrests occurred during Orange County operations during the past few months.

Most of the barbers charged with licensing violations as a result of the sheriff's operation pleaded no contest and were ordered to pay fines of about $500 — which is about equal to the ones inspectors issue when a barber or stylist has an expired license.

A licensing inspector determined that Strictly Skillz was in compliance and everyone working had a valid license displayed in plain view — but not before barbers said they spent an hour sitting in handcuffs.

Abrams, who works at Barber Kings in Pine Hills, said he knew his license wasn't current when inspectors entered, and he expected a slap on the wrist and a fine.

When he and the eight others arrested at Barber Kings that day got to jail, "everybody laughed at us," Abrams said. "Even the judge was like, 'Are you serious?' "

Abrams said inspectors could have just fined him, rather than parading him in handcuffs in front of his community. "It was just uncalled for," Abrams said.

A history of noncompliance?

Justifying the operations, Orange sheriff's officials said the shops targeted had displayed a lack of cooperation with state inspectors and had a history of criminal activity.

In terms of inspection history, the barbershops appear to have little in common. Records show some shops had lengthy histories of noncompliance, while others never had a complaint.

In terms of demographics, the shops had clear similarities: Their clientele, owners and staff were predominantly black or Hispanic, and all were located in or near high-crime areas.

And, although the Orange County barbershop raids were unprecedented in Florida, they're not the first of their kind.

Last year, the American Civil Liberties Union sued the city of Moreno Valley, Calif., among others, after authorities conducted what the civil-rights group described in its complaint as "a series of raid-style searches" of black barbershops.

The case has not yet been resolved, but records show some of the plaintiffs settled for $33,000 earlier this year.

The suit alleged that "police in Moreno Valley, in coordination with local and state inspectors," targeted black barbershops that "housed legitimate, respected businesses" that served the community as "social centers and gathering places."

Many of the west Orange County barbers made similar claims. Said Berry of Strictly Skillz, "There's a fine line [between] doing your job and violating a person's civil rights."


If it saves one child from a bad hair cut it is worth it...
Texas - Red State Blues

Texas GOP vs Hispanics - The War is On

Debbie Riddle pre-files immigration and voter ID bills
10:15 AM Mon, Nov 08, 2010
Christy Hoppe/Reporter

Rep. Debbie Riddle, R-Tomball, set up a mini-campground with folding chairs to be the first in line to file bills for the upcoming legislative session.

As promised, the first bill out of the chute was mandating that voters present a photo identification in order to cast a ballot. The other bills deal with clamp downs on illegal immigrants, including an Arizona-type law and prohibiting sanctuary cities. Both proposals deal with encouraging law enforcement to inquire about the immigration status of those stopped for routine and other policing matters.

The first 15 bills of any session are reserved for the priority subjects set by the speaker, so Riddle's voter ID bill carries the number HB 16. The lower number of a House bill doesn't provide special consideration, but is used for symbolic purposes.

Howard wins House seat by 16 votes
Outcome denies GOP supermajority in House for now
Updated: Monday, 08 Nov 2010, 9:45 PM CST
Published : Monday, 08 Nov 2010, 5:30 PM CST

Jarrod Wise
AUSTIN (KXAN) - In a photo finish that has left Democrats biting their nails across the state, Texas state Rep. Donna Howard, an Austin Democrat, clung to her seat on Monday after a few hundred overseas ballots were counted – crushing the GOP’s dreams of having a "super majority" in the Texas House.

“I had no clue as to what the outcome would be here," said Representative Howard by phone Monday. "We were all just watching and waiting to see. I was prepared for whatever the voter's decided here and I’m extremely grateful that we’ve had the outcome that’s going to allow me to continue to work for the district. So I’m extremely pleased.”

Howard keeps her seat by a mere 16 votes, in an election in which more than 50,000 were cast.
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Louis Theroux in Hell

NC: State GOP mailer calls Democratic state rep whose daughter was slain a ‘criminal coddler’

In what may prove the most ill-aimed attack ad of the 2010 election in North Carolina, the state Republican Party has sent a mailer into the Davidson County district of House Majority Leader Hugh Holliman (D) accusing him of being a “criminal coddler” without knowing that Holliman’s daughter was abducted and killed at 16.

The mailer features photos of two death row killers and the headline: “Thanks to Hugh Holliman, death row inmates could leave prison early and move in next door.”

The mailer shouts in capital, red letters that one of the pictured inmates RAPED AND MURDERED AN 11 YEAR OLD CHILD.

The senders of the mailer say they didn’t know that Holliman has a terrible knowledge of such a killer striking close to home. As The News & Observer of Raleigh reported Thursday, Holliman’s daughter was kidnapped, raped and murdered in 1985. Holliman witnessed the killer’s execution in 1998.

State GOP chairman Tom Fetzer told the Winston-Salem Journal that the mailer was sent into several districts and the targeted candidates names were changed,

The mailer ends with the statement: “Keep death row inmates where they belong and get rid of criminal coddler Hugh Holliman.”

In a statement, Holliman said: “I have never exploited the death of my daughter and the execution of her murderer for political gain, but I can’t stand here and let the state Republican Party in Raleigh say I am soft on crime. The mail piece that they put out was a new low in political campaigns. They owe an apology to my family for the pain they have caused with their careless disregard for the truth.”

Fetzer, a political leader who stresses the hardball side of politics, called Holliman’s home and left a recorded message of apology.

“I told him I was sorry if the mailer caused him or his family any anguish,” Fetzer told The News & Observer. “We did not know about the situation with his daughter.”

The mailer’s focus is on North Carolina’s 2009 passage of the NC Racial Justice Act. The law allows people facing the death penalty to present evidence in court of racial bias that may have caused an unfair conviction. The law does not allow for inmates who win appeals to be released.

Holliman is a supporter of the death penalty, but he voted for the Racial Justice Act saying it would make the death penalty more fair.

On Thursday, state GOP spokesman Jordan Shaw said it was unlikely Fetzer would have any further comment on the matter.


This is a couple weeks old, and guess what? Holliman lost his seat on Nov. 2nd -_-
garf tired


NJ Governor Chris Christie blasts teachers at Trenton Boys & Girls Club (VIDEO)

Staff Writer

TRENTON — Gov. Chris Christie used the Boys & Girls Club in Trenton this evening to take a shot at the teachers feeling insulted by his refusal to attend their annual convention in Atlantic City this week.

Addressing 50 high schoolers and several local officials, Christie said any state money Trenton gets should be spent making the city safer for young people and that he wishes he had the money to fund all urban needs.

But governor used the Q & A session with students to criticize the New Jersey Education Association, the teachers’ union, as a key cause of the state’s financial woes as well as the woes of urban education in Jersey.

Christie cited the litany of frequent complaints about the teachers’ union, from their getting virtually every holiday off to their long summer vacations and the two days they get off every year, by contract, to attend the convention in AC.

“These teachers have all summer off. Can’t they have their convention during the summer?’’ the governor said as he spoke to a clutch of high schoolers surrounding him.

“They got to get two days off from school because, you know, they don’t get enough time off now, right? They get two weeks off at Christmas, they get all the different holidays, then they get all the summer off and now they need two more days.

“Why do you think that is? Do you think If they cared about learning where would they be today?’’

Ashley Batts, 16, a Trenton Central High School sophomore answered “in school.’’

“That’s right, in school, baby, they would not be down there in Atlantic City having a party — because that’s what it is.’’

Yesterday from the convention site, the NJEA issued a statement saying governors have always come to their convention and that he was insulting teachers by not showing this year.

Similarly, on Election night a state lawmaker speaking to teachers at a rally told Christie to “go to hell,’’ a comment he took back the next day.

But Christie responded in kind this evening, and in answer to a question about “bad teachers’’ from 18-year-old TCHS grad Tyere Hill urged to the students to “stand up for education, like me.’’


I can't embed the video, so please visit the source.

also, diaf.